[Advaita-l] Fwd: What is 'aprAkRta' ?

Rajaram Venkataramani rajaramvenk at gmail.com
Wed Aug 3 12:34:23 CDT 2011

On Wed, Aug 3, 2011 at 3:25 PM, Venkatesh Murthy <vmurthy36 at gmail.com>wrote:

> Namaste
> The method of early Advaita Vedanta Page 223- 'From the absolute
> perspective, Sankara does distinguish between
> Išvara and the absolute Brahman, the sole Being that is pure Awareness. If
> he did not make such a distinction then his teaching would be a kind of
> monistic theism, but it would not be non-dualism (advaita). At the level of
> vyavahara. when the discussion has to do with the cosmos, the teaching of
> the Upanisads is that the Lord existed before the creation of the universe
> and the Lord has become the universe and everything in it (“I shall become
> many, I shall be born”.). Šankara acceps this, but he also accepts that
> there are šruti statements that deny all distinctions (“neti neti”,
> “asthula” etc.), and unlike Ramanuja. who gives a restricted
> meaning to the statements of negation às denying only evil qualities'
RV: If you accept one secondary source (Michael Comans), you have to accept
others (Paul Hacker). According to the latter's research, Brahman and
Ishwara are interchangeably used everywhere in Sankara Bhasya! To be fair,
Ramanuja resolves the objection of selective attribution of qualities  to
Brahman by classifying the locus of attributes - Ishwara, Nitya Siddha and
Baddhatma. As I mentioned in an earlier mail, the problem in his approach is
that the relationship between the attribute and the object is ill-defined.
This is resolved by Madhwa but he cannot define the locus of the
relationship itself as it is a real entity and cannot exist in two
substratum. Sankara resolves it the best by denying all particularities in
Brahman, which is Infinite. It is like white light which is none of the
colours but is the sum of all colours present as white manifested
individually through the prism of maya.

Adi Sankara will say Isvaratva of Isvara is illusion. If Madhusudana or
anyone says opposite he is not agreeing with Sankaracharya.

RV: He refers (cf. BG 15.14 - 18) to Nirupadhikara Brahman as Ishwaranila
(by nature Ishwara). It is because Ishwara is not Rulership. When the river
merges in to the ocean, the ocean does not sublate but the river does and
along with that the river's perception of the ocean. From the Ocean's
perspective, there is none other than itself.

But there is one objection. If Krishna has Prakruta Sharira like us how he
could at once enjoy and impregnate 16000 wives and have so many sons. How he
could lift Govardhana with one finger and how could he kill so many demons
in Gokula? Only superhuman can do this.

RV: You can acquire siddhis to operate multiple bodies or play around with
material laws. The main point is what Madhusudana says. It cannot be gross,
subtle, limited or cosmic because all of them belong to someone and He is
already in them as the Inner Controller. It has to be maya rupam and
aprakrtam as Sankara says.

> There are innumerable instances where Sri Chandrashekhara Bharati SwamigaL
or Sri Abhinava Vidyateertha SwamigaL
> have appeared in dreams and in the waking also to bless a person,
clarify something, or even give a mantropadesha.  Even today > > several
decades after their physical departure from this world these instances take

RV: As quoted earlier, an adhikarapurusha can do it. That a jivan mukta's
body is a product of prarabda karma is well known and its nature is distinct
from that of the Lord.

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